- The polished concrete: the trend material
- What is waxed concrete?
- How did he appear in our homes?
- The waxed concrete, for what uses?
- What are the benefits of waxed concrete?
- The waxed concrete, at what price?
The polished concrete: the trend material
Classically when we talk about concrete, we mentally represent the typical constructions of the post-war years, we imagine a raw material, rough, functional and very unattractive. However, the concrete has evolved in its composition to become, far from the standards, a trend material very popular today by interior designers. HandymanDuanche ponders the phenomenon of waxed concrete that is increasingly required in homes as a material both design and decorative.
What is waxed concrete?
Waxed concrete is a composite material directly derived from concrete whose plasticity, performance and appearance offer many applications. In its most usual use as a floor covering, the waxed concrete is made from a dressing or a projection of quartz slurry on a slab prepared for this purpose. This contribution of mineral filler is essential to give this material decorative hues, colorful and nuanced, very varied that can get out of the shackles of traditional colors: black, sand and white.
In order to break the granular and porous rendering on the surface, it is smoothed using a helicopter or mechanical trowel. The polishing of waxed concrete as a coating is also particularly decisive for its future visual rendering that will give it a unique appearance. Finally, a polymerized wax (resin) is applied to the entire surface to waterproof, protect and skate colors. Hence its name of waxed concrete.
How did he appear in our homes?
The waxed concrete first appeared in the industrial environment where it was used in the design of soils. It had indeed very attractive advantages for this branch of activity since particularly resistant, washable and relatively inexpensive. Shortly thereafter, his employment extended to superstores, high-traffic public places, hotel lobbies and businesses where the strength of the flooring and its easy maintenance were just as important factors as the price per square meter.
It was only in the 1980s, by the redevelopment of lofts industrial buildings in the Paris suburbs, that it was for the first time massively declined for private homes. Indeed, the surfaces of this type of apartment being very important, the use of a "conventional" floor material would have considerably increased the bill. Thus, for the sake of economy, the concrete was finally able to break the eyes of the public with its image of cold and raw material that was associated with it since the 1960s, to indulge in recent years to use more and more fanciful.
The waxed concrete, for what uses?
As a result, waxed concrete has gradually been introduced into private homes to become a "trendy" material for interior decoration, in all rooms, from the living room to the bathroom. In fact, in addition to beautifying your floors, waxed concrete can also be used to cover your walls. It comes in the form of a coating and is available to all tastes. By covering your walls with it, you will obtain a subtle patina effect that will match the color you want, given the multitude of colors available. The waxed concrete in the form of plaster is suitable for almost all walls: plasterboard, plaster tiles and even wall tiles.
But the use of waxed concrete has developed beyond simple surface coating to become the raw material for a new generation of furniture. Coffee table, coffee table, worktop, washbasin, bathtub, sink, garden furniture, various decorative objects. There are countless variations of this material in the house. Its richness is almost limitless since in addition to the furnishings offered and sold in commerce, it has now become relatively easy to "make yourself" your own polished concrete furniture via compositions almost ready for use and especially close to 3 times lighter than ordinary concrete. For this, you just need to use a wooden formwork, a mold or to apply the material as a coating on a support structure.
For fans of the "do-it-yourself", this evolution of concrete represents an almost endless freedom of creation allowing all fantasies of forms and aesthetic rendering, from the most colorful to the clearest. In addition, the very structure of this material gives it a unique and modern visual rendering that will appeal to lovers of non-conformist decoration.
What are the benefits of waxed concrete?
Concrete waxed as flooring, wall or furniture material, offers a very good surface resistance to wear and temperature variations. This is among others for this reason that it adapts well to the use of a system of underfloor heating. By the different mineral fillers that come into its composition, this concrete presents as we have seen a possibility of colors and colors very extensive able to adapt to all parts, including the most humid. Indeed, a water repellent treatment on the surface, after sanding will make your material completely inert in the face of water. Another of its notable advantages is its ease of maintenance. Indeed, if the application of the wax, during the installation, was done correctly a simple regular cleaning with traditional soap will suffice to maintain your surfaces. Nevertheless, it is not uncommon for a waxed concrete floor to have relatively small surface cracks relatively quickly, despite the different reinforcements used. It is therefore important to have a professional and / or perform it conscientiously by respecting the necessary setting and drying times.
The waxed concrete, at what price?
Its growing popularity as well as the improvements in the loads and techniques employed have significantly increased the price of waxed concrete in recent years. So today, to benefit from a polished concrete floor offering a wide range of colors, you will need between € 80 and € 100 per m² (excluding taxes, labor included). Some concretes, falsely called waxed, are in fact coated with an epoxy resin which reduces the purchase price per m² by nearly 50% but will not guarantee the same behavior over time. Similarly, there are many variations of this material, which have the effect of greatly varying prices. It is therefore important to learn about the characteristics of what is proposed so as not to be disappointed too quickly.
Able to adapt to all styles, waxed concrete also offers the possibility of giving back, so to speak, an aesthetic value full of modernity to the most classical materials such as wood and stone in stylistic associations such as mosaic. So he managed to break his image of sad material to become trendy and integrate the most stylish interior design. The craze it produces seems to want to last with regard to the various research that is currently conducted to give it more and more remarkable features, such as a high elasticity or a transparent version. In short, concrete is still far from being "has been" and seems to be limited only by our imagination.